“The stakes are really high now, higher than ever. We need to bring barriers down, not build walls. We need to love one another more and see how connected we really are. I think that’s the message of art.” –Terrance McNally
During the month of June the LGBTQ community and its allies celebrate pride month in remembrance of the 1969 Stonewall Uprising in Manhattan. Usually, the month would be celebrated with parades, lectures, and other cultural events. However, given the worldwide pandemic we now face, many of these events have been cancelled. In order to keep the celebration alive, OETA is airing three special Pride Month documentaries: Stonewall Uprising from American Experience, Terrence McNally: Every Act of Life from American Masters, and Prideland.
When police raided the Stonewall Inn, a popular gay bar in Greenwich Village in New York City on June 28, 1969, the street erupted into violent protests that lasted for days. The Stonewall riots, as they came to be known, marked a major turning point in the modern gay civil rights movement in the United States and around the world. Based on David Carter’s Stonewall: The Riots that Sparked the Gay Revolution and told through interviews with Stonewall patrons, reporters and the policeman who led the raid, Stonewall Uprising recalls the fervently hostile climate in which the gay community was forced to live. Watch Tuesday, June 9 at 8 pm.
Directly following Stonewall Uprising, we remember the life and work of Emmy and Tony Award-winning writer and playwright Terrence McNally, who sadly passed away in March of this year. Over the course of his six-decade career, he has written trailblazing plays, musicals, operas and screenplays about sexuality, homophobia, faith, the power of art, the need to connect and finding meaning in every moment of life. Terrence McNally: Every Act of Life from American Masters is Tuesday, June 9 at 9 pm. The film traces McNally’s personal and professional successes, struggles and failures, from his troubled beginnings in Corpus Christi, TX, to his acclaimed writing and activism.In addition to interviews with McNally, the film features insights from his friends, his family and some of the most notable stars of stage and screen who he has worked with and mentored, among them are Edie Falco, Nathan Lane, Angela Lansbury, Audra McDonald and Rita Moreno.
Finally, follow queer actor Dyllon Burnside in Prideland, Friday, June 12 at 10 pm, on his journey to discover how LGBTQ Americans are finding ways to live authentically and with pride in the modern South.